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I am currently writing an install guide for an application which requires Google Chrome. I am writing the install guide with HTML and what I would like to be able to do, once they have installed Google Chrome, is to launch the Google Chrome Settings tab from whichever browser they are currently using.

I have already tried just doing it from an anchor tag (which obviosuly doesn't work) such as:

<a href="chrome://chrome/settings/">Open Chrome Settings</a>

Does anyone know if it is possible to do something like this or should I just tell them to open Chrome from the start menu and click on the wrench/list/whatever their settings icon is now days?

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What happens if you click that link? – Bonsi Scott Nov 23 '12 at 5:35
@BonsiScott: What would happen is that the non-Chrome browser wouldn't understand the chrome protocol in the URL. – Amos M. Carpenter Nov 23 '12 at 7:25
@BonsiScott aaamos is correct. The browser simply does nothing. – Sandor A Dec 3 '12 at 2:47
up vote 1 down vote accepted

1) To answer your question, I would recommend that you tell your users to open Chrome directly, whichever way that needs to be done on their system. I'm assuming (since you're saying it has to run in Chrome) that it's an HTML app. These can obviously have links that point to URIs, and typically, those URIs are handled by the browser. Security-conscious browsers will not simply run other applications based on a user clicking a URL (you can imagine the security implications if they did - it would be a hacker's dream come true).

2) Having said that, there are apps (such as CustomURL that will let you associate custom URI protocols with specific applications. However, for the reasons given above and because having to get your users to install third-party software in order for your software to work is bad practice and limits and makes certain assumptions about their environment, I would recommend against this approach.

3) Why do you want to bring back the days where apps would run in only one specific browser? Write an app that will run on any standards-compliant browser and your users will thank you for giving them the freedom of choice.

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Thank you for your response, I had pretty much figured it would not be possible, as you pointed out it is a security nightmare, (or dream) depending on your standpoint. – Sandor A Dec 3 '12 at 2:24
In response to point 3, Why would you assume it was by choice that I am in this situation? To put it simply, the requirements of the application dictated the browser. In fact, I think telling your customers to use a 'standards compliant' browser is like telling them to find the golden goose. It doesn't exist. We all know each support different standards, and support each standard differently. You can make a cross browser compatible application, but producing standards compliant code, is just not enough. If your customer doesn't want it, you can't charge them for it, so you don't do it. – Sandor A Dec 3 '12 at 3:06
@SandorA: The general consensus among web-devs (at least in my experience) is that "standards-compliant" ones are pretty much all modern non-IE browsers. Any properly-written and well-styled web page or app should look almost identical in them. The few minor differences are usually due to specifications being slightly vague and thus open to browser makers' interpretations. However, point taken about it not being your choice, fair enough - consider my point 3) to be a cry of frustration at having been in the situation myself where I had to cater for specific browsers ;-) – Amos M. Carpenter Dec 4 '12 at 3:54

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